Jump to content

How Does He Stay On The Thing?


Recommended Posts

Awesome pic....but one has to remember...a picture of an action frozen in time is a lie. My guess is that these men are probably in motion and have not yet reached the end of their travel across the saddle...unless they are relying on friction under their thigh created by centripetal force and balancing on both pegs.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Clamping at the outside knee is not the only way to hold onto a bike. Many VERY famous, fast champions do not brace with the outside knee. Doohan and Duhammel are perfect examples.


They have simply found another manner to stabilize themselves on the bike.


Can you? Probably...


In my years of working with Keith, I've learned many things. One of which is that Keith's written and taught ways are certainly not the ONLY way. One might argue that some of them aren't even the "best" way. However, from my experience, his "ways" are the easiest to teach, learn and apply repeatedly, which is what COUNTS.


Freddie Spencer teaches brake finesse. He's on the brakes in one manner or another for 85% of a lap (yes, 85%).


Keith Code would just as soon remove the brakes from the bikes, teaching throttle control.


Which one is right? These are two dramatically different methods from two highly reputed professionals. Who train thousands of VERY fast racers.


In teaching someone to be fast/smooth/consistent/safe, an instructor has to determine what will be the easiest for a student to grasp, and the most repeatable.


A person can argue all day long that trail braking is the fastest way around the track. You know what? They may be right! However, trail braking also brings along a LOT of other "baggage". The risk of losing the front increases dramatically by carrying the brakes into a corner. The risk of mental lock-up because of the speed also shoots up. Many people cannot handle the "extra baggage", so trail-braking becomes something which cannot be effectively used for them.


Locking yourself on the bike by using the outside knee is no different. The goal is stability between man and machine. Keith simply teaches what he believes to be the best and easiest manner to do this. It certainly is not the only one...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Interesting comments -- after 12 CSS sessions, I did a 3 day spencer course, just finished it. In the classroom we got to watch films of Spencer's GP races, and man you should have seen Randy Mamola railing around corners with his outside leg totally off the bike. Sticking out in the wind, practically! I don't know how he stayed on (well, he did go off track a few times . . .)


I don't want to get into the whole body steering/countersteering thing -- you know Nick Ienatsch and Freddie teach no countersteering, all body steering. I will say that all the braking drills and trailbraking practice indeed had me carrying higher speeds into the corner, but braking with a much lighter touch than ever before, even though I was braking harder. Somehow I doubt that I'll ever stop countersteering, though! I will also say that there is a lot of stuff that you can do with your body position when you're hanging off that seems to affect bike direction, but at that point I've already gotten the bike leaned over.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

I think u will stay "on" the bike even if u were totally in air.. forget having just outside foot unlocked.. thats simple physics..newton's law..aint it?


If u r weighing the outside peg, then obviously u have a grasp becuase u r putting that small downward pressure on it..isnt it(this is more of a ques, I m confused)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The leverage is between the inner thigh to the seat (from body weight)

and the friction of the heel of boot to the peg.


(so it isn't the pressing down on the peg, but the inward friction from the peg to the sole).


dunno if you can picture this, but I definitely do need more practice in explaining myself :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anybody ever ride a dirt bike? How much time do you spend "sitting" on the seat? If you're doing more than putt-putting around the parking lot...not much, I'll wager.


So, where is your weight in a turn? Inside peg, outside peg, heel, toe...whatever. I can tell you that some of my weight is under my thigh on the seat, but, generally on my feet on the pegs. Unless I'm tired and getting lazy. Being on the pegs gives me a sense of being in control. Riding the bike as opposed to the bike taking me for a ride. Prepared and able to make changes. And if I'm going to move my butt, I pretty much need to be on my feet. Because, frankly, the only other point I can support my weight would be my hands...on the bars. Bad deal. Make sense?


To accomplish this may take some practice if you are used to tooling around on the street. Try keeping your butt "curled" under your torso. At least that's what it feels like to me.


A photo is a freeze frame. Keep in mind that centrifugal forces are at work as well as gravity. He doesn't fall off because his weight is being pulled 'sideways' (laterally) as well as 'down'. He isn't "hanging" on the bike in the literal sense. Though there maybe a bit of weight on the seat, I don't think it would be friction holding him up so much as lateral g's pushing him 'down' onto the seat.


Keep in mind also, if you aren't racing yourself, that the lateral g forces at racing speeds far exceed any you should be experiencing on the street. My fastest school times on a 600 were 10 seconds a lap slower than my slowest race lap a few years later...on a 125.


And do you see how long Colin's legs appear to be? Well, they are long, but, look at where his footpegs are located. Not just 'rearset' but also a bit higher than your average sportbike. It is a matter of preference, but, higher pegs do allow for moving around and off the seat a bit easier. I think this may contribute to the 'gangly' appearance or the seeming unnatural distance between his leg and the bike. And consequently, long legs + high pegs = more leg leftover after butt width movement off seat.


I used to have a set of pegs so high on my 400 that I looked like a horse jockey. And the first time I got on a factory 125 I had to actually lift my leg with my hand to get my foot on the peg at all. I never bothered to glue the seat pad on my last tail section because, frankly, I never sat down.


I learned at racing school that the only time you sit on the seat is to have a rest down the backstraight. Then Rich Oliver showed me I'd do better staying on the pegs with my butt off the seat after all...aerodynamically speaking. But that's another story...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I found this quite funny with regard to this article.


I appreciate motion doesn't get captured by cameras and also under stand that some riders grip with their thighs rather than the knee, but I also wondered how they grip like this and still stay on the bike!


Then I noticed this picture of me at Snetterton in the UK on my Suzuki TL1000R Race Bike:





It appears that sometimes I hang off, gripping with my Thigh and not my knee. Maybe I was moving still, but who knows. Ok, so I've not got alot of lean on the go in this shot, I think it was taken whilst I was scrubbing in some new slicks, but it made me laugh!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

in both pictures those guys are going very fast around a tight corner, so there are heavy g forces pressing them into the bike as they go around the corner, they don't really need to hold on at all other than to steer

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Just a quick addition for you guys, which proves that you really do not have to clamp onto the bars even the slightest bit to ride a bike on track at speed. Not sure if many of you have seen this pictures before, but basically, due to a nasty accident, this chap lost the use of his left arm completely. Therfore it is tucked inside his leathers. As you can see, he's clamping on and doing quite well:



















Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...